This is a heads-up to anyone in the Southern California area that may be interested in attending a screening of what looks to be a fascinating documentary. Titled ‘Beetle Queen Conquers Tokyo’, this film by writer/director Jessica Oreck focuses on how Japanese people have a close relationship with insects. I had actually not known this was the case prior to reading about this film…but now that I have, I’m intrigued.

Growing up in California, we in this country tend to get really squeamish about bugs and consider them creepy and gross. Conversely, the Japanese have long had a good relationship with ‘creepy crawlies’, and that is evident by the trailer for Oreck’s film. Check it out:

The company putting on this show, Cinefamily, posted this helpful write-up about the film that sheds more insight on the phenomenon:

Working backwards through history, Beetle Queen Conquers Tokyo explores the mystery of the development of Japan’s love affair with bugs. While people of many other countries fear all manner of creepy crawlies, the Japanese love and respect them: they’re sold live in vending machines and department stores; they’re the subject of the No. 1 videogame MushiKing; and a single beetle recently sold for $90,000. Insects have been an integral part of the centuries-old traditions of the country, once described as the “Isle of the Dragonflies.” The film’s gorgeous imagery links people with the strength of beetles, the music of crickets, the magic of fireflies and the endless colors of butterflies. Using bugs like an anthropologist’s toolkit, the film uncovers Japanese philosophies that will shift Westerners’ perspectives on nature, beauty, life, and even the seemingly mundane realities of their day-to-day routines.

If I was able to, I would definitely hit up this screening, as the documentary looks really interesting and tickets are only ten dollars. I’m not going to be able to go, unfortunately, but anyone in the area who seems remotely intrigued by this film should not hesitate.

Thanks to Letsugo! for the heads-up.

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  1. Rachael,

    that’s really neat. I’ll spread the word…hope the film does well! 🙂

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